Three gallons of cider to drink. That was the upshot of the last post. I had one gallon of Ben Crossman’s Home Orchard Special (7.%)and two gallons of Thatcher’s Cheddar Valley (6%).

The Cheddar Valley is a cider that I am used to and like a lot, that is why I get a batch every time I pass through Somerset. It is a bright orange colour, not clear in the slightest. Very little in the way of carbonation to begin with, the longer the bottle was kept closed, the more there was because the cider is still fermenting in the bottle. To taste, at first it seams a little watery, definitely not harsh like some ciders. There is very little in the way of tannin. A second taste reveals more of the apple flavours, again, no strong cider flavours. This is a very easy to drink cider, too easy. It has none of the strong tastes that some really traditional ciders have but does have a sweet, juicy flavour, which, although isn’t just apple juice, does remind me of sweet, sugary drinks that I had as a child, I think that may have something to do with the colour though.

The Home Orchard Special, a lighter colour than the Cheddar Valley, more clear to look at and a lighter, more straw like colour. There is a much stronger aroma from this than Cheddar Valley. To taste, it is much drier, slightly hard to get your mouth around at first, especially when I haven’t had a dry cider for a long while. The Home Orchard Special is slightly bitter as well but I found to be a much more pleasurable drink, once I had gotten accustomed to its flavour.

Of the two I would choose Ben Crossman’s over Thatcher’s, I found the Thatcher’s, while pleasurable, to be either too sweet or too watery at times, where as once I had remembered what to expect from the Crossman’s I found it to be more rounded, more flavoursome and on top of all that, more entertaining to buy.